Reuben Dog

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  • Level: Advanced
  • Total: 1 day 8 hr 25 min
  • Prep: 2 hr 45 min
  • Inactive: 1 day 3 hr
  • Cook: 2 hr 40 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
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6 Pastrami Dogs, recipe follows

6 tablespoons salted butter

6 Rye Split Top Hot Dog Buns, recipe follows

6 ounces gruyere, sliced or shredded

3/4 cup 1000 Island Dressing, recipe follows

3 cups Celebration Slaw, recipe follows

Pastrami Dogs:

3 pounds beef short rib meat or chuck, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (at least 20-percent fat content)

Ice, for placing in a bowl

1 1/4 cups ice water

1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt

1 tablespoon powdered dextrose, or 2 teaspoons fine sugar

1 tablespoon ground pickling spice

1 tablespoon light brown sugar

1 1/4 teaspoons pink salt, such as InstaCure or Prague Powder 1, used for red color, or 2 tablespoons kosher salt

1 1/2 tablespoons crushed garlic

1 tablespoon coarsely ground toasted coriander seeds

1 tablespoon coarsely ground toasted black peppercorns

1/4 teaspoon ground juniper berries

2/3 cup nonfat milk powder or textured soy protein

1 tablespoon liquid smoke, use if poaching, not smoking, the dogs

Rye Split Top Hot Dog Buns:

3/4 cup rye flour

3/4 cup warm milk (110 degrees F)

1/4 cup onion, pulverized like an onion smoothie

3 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 tablespoon instant yeast

3 cups bread flour or all-purpose flour, plus more as needed

3/4 cup warm water (110 degrees F)

1 tablespoon caraway seeds, slightly smashed

2 teaspoons kosher salt

Nonstick spray

1 egg white

1000 Island Dressing:

1 cup Garlic Mayo, recipe follows

1/2 cup chopped garlic dill pickles

1/4 cup ketchup

3 tablespoons chili sauce, such as Heinz

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice


Garlic Mayo:

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon kosher salt

2 cloves garlic, chopped

2 large egg yolks

1 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Celebration Slaw:

1/2 cup Garlic Mayo, recipe above

2 tablespoons Creole mustard, such as Zatarain's

2 tablespoons light brown sugar

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon minced fresh scallion

2 teaspoons buttermilk

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon hot sauce, such as Crystal or Frank's

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 small jalapeno pepper, minced but not deseeded

4 cups store-bought coleslaw mix

1 fresh jalapeno, seeded and julienned


Special equipment:
meat grinder with large and small grinding palette and chilled paddle attachment; 6 feet of hog casing or 12 feet sheep of casing, rinsed and soaked in room temperature water; butcher's twine, for tying the dogs
  1. Preheat a flattop griddle or barbeque grill to medium heat. Cook the Pastrami Dogs on the griddle or grill until the skin becomes very taught and slightly charred, without splitting. If the juice spills out, so does the fun. 
  2. Spread the salted butter on each side of the Rye Split Top Hot Dog Buns evenly. 
  3. Split the buns slightly, keeping the bottom intact. Divide the gruyere evenly inside the bun. Try to keep the gruyere on both sides; this is easier to do with slices, but you don't often find sliced gruyere. And gruyere is so, so good. 
  4. Grill both sides of the buns until you get that "grilled cheese" look: perfectly golden brown. Put the dogs in the buns. Top each dog with 1 tablespoon of the 1000 Island Dressing and the Celebration Slaw. Be blown away by the awesomeness that is the Reuben Dog.

Pastrami Dogs:

  1. Arrange the meat in a single layer on a plastic-lined sheet tray or in a re-sealable plastic bag. Place the meat in the freezer until the meat is partially but not totally frozen, 30 to 45 minutes. I call this the semifreddo stage. 
  2. Set a bowl within a larger bowl full of ice. Grind the meat through the largest grinding plate of the meat grinder into the non-ice bowl.
  3. Combine the ground meat with the ice water, kosher salt, dextrose, pickling spice, brown sugar and pink salt. Place the meat mixture in a re-sealable plastic bag and cure for 24 to 48 hours. 
  4. Spread the meat onto a plastic-lined sheet pan. Place the meat in the freezer until the mixture is very stiff (semifreddo again), about 30 minutes. 
  5. Set a bowl within a larger bowl full of ice. Grind the meat mixture and garlic together using the smallest plate of a meat grinder into the non-ice bowl. 
  6. Mix the meat in the bowl of a stand mixer with a chilled paddle attachment until the mixture looks like stiff dough, several minutes. The temperature of the meat should be below 35 degrees F at this point. 
  7. Add the coriander, peppercorns and juniper berries. Add the milk powder and mix, about 2 minutes. Add the liquid smoke if poaching, not smoking, the dogs. 
  8. Boil a small pot of water to 200 degrees F. Test the meat: create a small meatball wrapped in plastic wrap. Boil the meatball until it reaches 140 degrees F internally, about 10 minutes. Taste the meatball to see if more seasoning is needed. The texture should be firm and springy, like a good hot dog. If the meatball is crumbly, you may need to start over. Sorry. 
  9. Return the meat to a re-sealable plastic bag and refrigerate until stuffing time or begin stuffing straight away. Stuff the meat into the hog casings, and create links by tying off the casings with the butcher's twine. 
  10. Preheat a smoker or charcoal grill with a cover between 180 to 200 degrees F. Smoke the links in the smoker or grill until they reach an internal temperature of 150 degrees F, 2 to 2 1/2 hours. 
  11. If smoking on a grill, place the links on one side of the grill and place approximately twenty pieces of charcoal on the other side of the grill. The grill is ready to smoke when the lit charcoal is no longer ablaze. Monitor your grill carefully. If the internal temperature of the grill or smoker gets too high the links will cook too quickly.
  12. Alternatively, the links can be poached in 200 degrees F water until the internal temperature of the links are 150 degrees F. 
  13. Transfer the links to an ice bath and chill until the internal temperature is about 100 degrees F.

Rye Split Top Hot Dog Buns:

Yield: 12 buns and 2 slices.
  1. Combine the rye flour, milk, onion, honey, unsalted butter and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer using the dough hook. Allow to rest, 5 to 10 minutes. The mixture may not bubble much but it should start to swell slightly. 
  2. Add 2 1/2 cups of the bread flour, the water and caraway seeds. Mix slowly at first and then on medium speed. Add 1/2 cup more of the bread flour and the salt. The dough should come together and have a tacky but not too sticky consistency. Add more of the bread flour, as needed, to get the dough where it just pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Continue mixing until the dough looks smooth, about 5 minutes. 
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Turn the oven off 3 minutes after reaching the temperature. Spray the inside of a bowl with nonstick spray. Place the dough in the bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Place the bowl in the turned-off oven. Allow the dough to rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. 
  4. After the dough rises, remove the bowl from the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. 
  5. Punch the dough and transfer to a work space. Separate the dough into 13 pieces, about 3 ounces each, using a bench knife. Use both your hands to roll the dough into tight, uniform balls. Make sure there are no air pockets in the middle of your dough balls. 
  6. Roll each ball into 7-inch cylinders using both hands and rolling from the middle out. Make sure the cylinders are even in length or your buns will be wonky. Keep whatever dough you are not immediately working with covered loosely with plastic. 
  7. Line a 15-inch-long, or longer, sheet pan with parchment paper or cover well in nonstick spray. Place each dough cylinder side-by-side up the center of the sheet pan, leaving 1/2-inch space between each one. Cover the pan with plastic and allow to rise until the cylinders are touching, about 15 minutes. 
  8. Remove the plastic wrap. Combine 1 tablespoon water with the egg white and brush this mixture in an even coat all over the dough. Allow the dough to rise, about 15 minutes. 
  9. Bake the dough until the buns are nicely golden brown on top and 190 degrees F in the center, rotating the pan halfway through the baking time, about 20 minutes total. Allow the buns to rest in the pan, 10 to 15 minutes. 
  10. Transfer the buns in one piece (that's very important) to a cooling rack to prevent soggy-bottom buns and cool, about 30 minutes. 
  11. Transfer the buns to a cutting surface. Slice down the center of each tube of dough using a serrated knife (this is the cool part). You will lose half a tube on each end, hence yielding only 12 buns and 2 awesome slices of rye bread that you will eat immediately. The place where the tubes meet is now the center of the bun. They should split naturally but you can use a serrated knife to help them, if you choose. 
  12. Now you have a beautiful bread wall that you can butter and toast. Wrap the buns in plastic or a re-sealable plastic bag until ready to use. Freeze the buns immediately if you will not be using them the same day.

1000 Island Dressing:

  1. Combine the Garlic Mayo, pickles, ketchup, chili sauce, Worcestershire, lemon juice and sprinkle with salt. Mix until a homogenous consistency is reached.

Garlic Mayo:

  1. Combine the lemon juice, mustard, salt, garlic and egg yolks in a blender or food processor. Blend on medium speed until the mixture is smooth. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil until emulsified. You will hear a "slapping" sound from the blender or food processor when the oil starts to emulsify. Blend the mixture until all of the oil is incorporated; the consistency should be that of a heavy mayonnaise. Use the mayo immediately or refrigerate and keep for up to a month. 
  2. This recipe can also be made by combining 1 cup store-bought mayo, 1 clove crushed garlic and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.

Celebration Slaw:

Yield: 4 cups
  1. Combine the Garlic Mayo, Creole mustard, light brown sugar, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, scallion, buttermilk, salt, hot sauce, black pepper and jalapenos in a medium mixing bowl. Whisk the ingredients until incorporated. Set aside. Any of this mixture that you do not used can be stored in the refrigerator, up to 2 weeks. 
  2. Toss the coleslaw, jalapenos and Garlic Mayo mixture to desired creaminess in a large mixing bowl, about 6 tablespoons Garlic Mayo mixture to 4 cups coleslaw. Serve immediately. 
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